Pop Culture

Aping the apes: TV's top 'Planet' parodies

"Rise of the Planet of the Apes," the origin story of the classic apes takeover tale, opens Aug. 5. But before fans of the franchise pack theaters for the reboot, there are a few not-so-serious takes on the action they may want to watch.

Forget the genetic engineering. Forget the modern-day interpretation of the ape overlords. Forget James Franco (well, maybe don't forget James Franco). This monkey business is just for laughs.

Here's a list of television's top "Planet" parodies: 

There's only one gag that could possibly top the list. This 1996 clip from "The Simpsons" set the bar with a joke-packed, musical version of the story. (Warning: If you're not currently singing "Dr. Zaius! Dr. Zaius!" to the tune of Falco's "Rock Me Amadeus" over and over again in your head, you soon will be.)

In a "South Park" episode called "Bebe's Boobs," the local school boys went bananas when they noticed, well, Bebe's boobs. Their ape-like behavior left a couple of astronauts convinced that humans were no longer running the show.

"Robot Chicken" put its usual action-figure spin on the story with "Planet of the Ape” — yeah, just the one ape.

On "Family Guy," Peter Griffin once pondered just how many "dirty, stinkin' apes" it might take to screw in a light bulb. Of course, he might have been playing to the wrong audience.

That wasn't the only time "Family Guy" went to the apes. Little Stewie channeled his inner-Charlton Heston when addressing Brian, aka the "damn, dirty dog."

There are plenty other examples of television monkeying around with everyone's favorite apes. Those that at least rank an honorable mention include Stephen Colbert's "Planet of the Apes: Could it Happen?"mock investigation from back in his "Daily Show" days and a one-off episode of "Eek! Stravaganza" aptly titled "Planet of the Crepes!"

Which "Planet of the Apes" send up is the top banana? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page!

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